Press Release
February 6, 2017


Sen. Grace Poe announced today that the Senate will open the period of interpellations for emergency powers on Tuesday (Feb. 7), as senators are expected to tackle the nitty-gritty of the measure and flesh out thorny issues.

"We would start the plenary debates for the emergency powers so that we will finish and approve the bill at the soonest. We want to be part of the solution to the debilitating traffic woes experienced by Filipinos everyday," said Poe, chairperson of the Senate committee on public services. Under Committee Report No. 24 or An Act Compelling the Government to Address the Transportation and Congestion Crisis Through the Grant of Emergency Powers to the President, alternative methods could be used to speed up implementation of key transportation projects. The emergency powers, if approved, shall be valid and effective until the next adjournment of Congress--or in June 2019--unless sooner withdrawn by Congress.

"We will work double time to ensure that we come up with a law that will address and significantly ease the traffic crisis engulfing major urban centers in the country," Poe said.

Earlier, the public services committee chair emphasized that "emergency powers is not a gift to the administration but a challenge that compels the Executive to move."

In sponsoring the measure last Dec. 14, Poe pointed out, "A long train of bad ideas, bankrupt programs, botched projects and lack of meaningful foresight has made the current situation unbearable. It is now time to untangle the mess."

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